The following is a list of links to land-surface images formatted and labeled by Bruce Railsback. Educators are welcome to use these images in their teaching, so long as the images are not reproduced in publications and are not used for financial gain.

Aerial Photographs, Satellite Images, and Maps


Streams and Rivers

An aerial photograph of the braided North Platte River and its meandering tributary streams in Garden County, Nebraska, U.S.A.

The Susquehanna Valley, Pennsylvania, U.S.A., a classic superposed river.


Drainage Patterns

A MODIS image of a radial drainage pattern around volcanic centers in southern France.

A MODIS image of the rectangular drainage system through which the lower Volga makes a right-angle turn to the Caspian, leaving behind streams that instead flow to the Black Sea.

A digital color topographic image of South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas showing the parallel drainage of the Great Plains.

A combined image of aerial photographs of three Illinois landscapes of different ages, and full-size images of the landscapes, from St. Joseph, Toldeo, and New Canton, Illinois.

An aerial photograph of The northern edge of the Osage River Valley in Morgan County, Missouri, U.S.A., and an aerial photograph of a smaller area within that large image.

A digital color topographic image of Missouri and southern Iowa showing the dendritic drainage of the unglaciated region south of the Missouri River and the parallel drainage of the glaciated region north of the Missouri River.


Drainage Patterns and Paleoclimate

A MODIS image of the Central Sahara and a higher-resolution view within the previous image showing dendritic drainages that are evidence of wetter climates in the past in the Sahara.


Drowned Dendritic Drainage Patterns

A LANDSAT image showing drowned dendritic drainages on the coast of Guinea-Bissau.

A Landsat view showing drowned dendritic drainages in eastern Australia near Sydney.

Aerial photographs of dendritic drainages drowned by sea-level rise along Mobjack bay, Virginia, U.S.A.

Aerial photography of Annapolis, Maryland, U.S.A. showing drowned dendritic drainages

Aerial photography of Norfolk, Virginia, U.S.A. showing drowned dendritic drainages.

A NASA MISR image of the Chesapeake Bay region (a contextual image for the three above).


Alluvial Fans

Two alluvial fans in Mississippi at the Tertiary-Quaternary escarpment.


Land Use

A MODIS image of Lesotho and surrounding South Africa showing the stark contrast in appearance of the land surface to two nations of differing economic development.

Aerial photographs of the Kennecot Copper Mine near Bingham, Utah, U.S.A.

A NASA MISR image showing cities along the Fall Line in the eastern US: the image alone and image with text.

A MODIS image showing the Savannah River Site as a round green anomaly of forest amidst the farmland of the Coastal Plain of Georgia and South Carolina in the southeastern U.S.. Also note the gray of Fall Line cities like Macon, Augusta, and Columbia, and of Savannah and Charleston on the coast.

A MODIS image of the Upper Mississippi Valley (Minnesota, Wisonsin, Iowa, and Illinois). Yellow arrows point to dark green undisturbed areas, which are a distinct minority compared to agricultural areas (light green) and urban areas (gray). The Driftless Area is also distinct.

Spring and fall MODIS images showing SE Indiana, SW Ohio, and N Kentucky in which the Jefferson Proving Ground, a military facility, is the relatively undisturbed anomaly against which land cover can be compared. The right image is from late summer of a drought year.

A MODIS image showing southwestern Australia's parks and preserves as green anomalies against the Wheat Belt east of Perth.

A image photographed from Space Shuttle Atlantis showing Mt. Egmont National Park, New Zealand, a circle of green forest preserved since 1881 amidst pasturelands.

LANDSAT imagery of irrigated land near Garden City, Kansas: an image about 60 miles across and an image about 8 miles across.

Four images of the Aral Sea from 1964 to 1972 showing how it has shrunk in response to withdrawal of water from riivers that feed into it. For more information and the source of three of the four images, see the USGS's Earthshots page on the Aral Sea.

An annotated ASTER image of the Colorado River Delta showing effects of withdrawal of water upstream for irrigation and residential use. There's also an image showing the Delta for context relative to the Gulf of California.

An image from the International Space Station of Owens Lake, once a blue salt-water lake but now a salt flat after diversion of the Owens River to the Los Angeles aqueduct.

For more, see "Changing the World".


Underlying Geology

An unlabeled space shuttle image of the Sinai Peninsula and the same image with labels, illustrating the regional nonconformity there.

A MODIS image from the Gulf of Aqaba to the Dead Sea to the Sea of Galilee along a transform plate boundary.

A NOAA/NGDC topographic image (unlabeled and labeled) of the Arabian Peninsula illustrating the northeastward movement of that peninsula and the Dead Sea rift above as a transform plate boundary.

An image of South America synthesized from NOAA / National Geophysical Data Center digital topographic images.

A shuttle-based radar-generated image from western Argentina (The Earth Science Picture of the Day for 31 July 2001).

A NASA MODIS image of the Bahamas.

A digital color topographic image of the Black Hills and Bighorns

Aerial photographs of Hogbacks and the Front Range of the Rockies west of Denver, Colorado.

A MODIS image of the Grand Canyon in Arizona, U.S.A., that provides context for the next two images.

     A MODIS image of the Grand Canyon - northeast section.

     A MODIS image of the Grand Canyon - southwest section.

A MODIS image of the Basin and Range.

A MODIS image of California's Central Basin, the Sierra Nevadas, and the western Basin and Range. This image, nice in its own right, is a good introduction to the next one.

A MODIS image of the Sierra Nevadas

The Cascade volcanoes in a set of MODIS images.



A MODIS image of the Finger Lakes of western New York state, U.S.A.

A digital color topographic image of the Midwest - an overview of the next five images.

      A digital color topographic image of the Coteau de Prairie region and the two glacial flowpaths along it. Also see the next image.

      A digital color topographic image of Iowa showing the Des Moines Lobe at the end of the eastern of the two flow paths in the previous image.

      A digital color topographic image of southwest Wisconsin showing the Driftless Area.

A USGS topographic map image of Kettle Moraine in southeast Wisconsin labeled with areas of ground moraine, end moraine, and outwash plain, and with gravel pits highlighted in yellow. Based on Figure 10.14 of Ritter, D.F., 1978, Process Geomorphology (Dubuque, W.C. Brown).



A Space Shuttle image of diffracted internal waves near the Nicobar Islands in the Andaman Sea of the eastern Indian Ocean.

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